• Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 52 other followers

  • Archives

  • Like us on Facebook!

Jamtastic!

Very happy to spread the Jam with my friends Ross and Danine of Jamtastic, for their new Website http://www.jamtasticjam.com.

Catering is Key

Aside from the ceremony, the dress, ring, venue, and guests—the food at a wedding is key to a great night. My friends at Apogee Catering excel at cranking out loads of mouth-watering tidbits and delicious entrees for large and small events alike. These are a few of my favorites from last weekend’s wedding at Stoneover Farm in Lenox, MA. Having the open firewood charcoal pit to cook on a cool autumn night on only made it better.

Herb-rubbed Roasted Pork Loin, almost ready for the carving station

Herb-rubbed Roasted Pork Loin, almost ready for the carving station

Apogee_004

Prosciutto, sopresatta, country paté, Brie, herbed-goat cheese, and aged cheddar, with marinated vegetables, mixed nuts and sun-dried fruits, artisanal crackers…in other words nom noms

Apogee_005 Apogee_007 Apogee_011

Vodka, ginger beer, fresh squeezed lime.

Vodka, ginger beer, fresh squeezed lime.

Apogee_050

Crudite “Bentos” (Fresh veg with feta-herb dip and roasted red pepper aioli)

Apogee_035

Sundried tomato-Asiago Arancini (crispy-creamy risotto balls)

Sundried tomato-Asiago Arancini (crispy-creamy risotto balls)

Apogee_090

Bruschetta with Rosemary, Roasted Plum tomatoes, Ricotta and Prosciutto

Bruschetta with Rosemary, Roasted Plum tomatoes, Ricotta and Prosciutto

Beef Carpaccio on Edible Asian Spoons (with a dollop  of horseradish cream)

Beef Carpaccio on Edible Asian Spoons (with a dollop of horseradish cream)

Apogee_099 Apogee_107

Mini Stuffed Peppers 9with ground Angus beef, rice, caramelized onions, garlic, and marinara sauce)

Mini Stuffed Peppers (with ground Angus beef, rice, caramelized onions, garlic, and marinara sauce)

Toasting the pita bread before it's cut up for the above mentioned nom noms

Toasting the pita bread before it’s cut up for the above mentioned nom noms

Not sure if these were shrimp or small lobsters

Not sure if these were shrimp or small lobsters

Prosciutto, sopresatta, country paté, Brie, herbed-goat cheese, and aged cheddar, with marinated vegetables, mixed nuts and sun-dried fruits, artisanal crackers…in other words nom noms

Chef Eric doing what he does so well

Chef Eric doing what he does so well

Apogee_126 Apogee_131 Apogee_145 Apogee_186

The beautiful barn at Stonover Farm

The Apogee team putting the finishing touches on the tables inside the beautiful barn at Stonover Farm

Fresh tomato and mozzarella

Fresh tomato and mozzarella sprinkled with chopped basil

Alfredo sauce is always good.

Alfredo sauce is always good.

Putting the finishing herbs on penne with sausage and peppers

Putting the finishing herbs on penne with sausage and peppers

Bacon and Scallion Smashed Potatoes

Bacon and Scallion Smashed Potatoes

Apogee_249

Grilled Vegetable Platters, Caesar salad, fresh tomato basil and mozzarella, fresh mini corn muffins and artisan rolls.

Eggplant Rollatini (with ricotta, mozzarella, Provolone and campari tomato sauce.

Eggplant Rollatini (with ricotta, mozzarella, Provolone and Campari tomato sauce.

Oh, and the Herb-rubbed Roasted Pork Loin. Yum...

Oh, and the Herb-rubbed Roasted Pork Loin. Yum…

A Slice of Heaven

Of all the photo shoots I do throughout the year for clients, when I get a call from a restaurant owner to come shoot their food and their restaurant I get excited. It’s really the thing I enjoy doing the most.

These are some of my favorites for a series of shoots I did for Baba Louie’s. The owners, Eileen and Paul Masiero just get it, and like any successful restauranteurs they start with fresh ingredients, and in my humble opinion make the best pizza in the area. They have set up a bakery which pre-bakes the sourdough crusts fresh everyday for the 3 area restaurants, as well as bread for the sandwiches and dinner rolls. I am a sucker for great pizza and have been striving to bake the perfect pizza at home, but I can’t hold a candle to what Baba Louie’s is doing. The crust is perfect, thin and crispy and the toppings are loaded thick with fresh toppings and cooked with a hot wood-fired oven. The sandwiches, salads, and pasta specials are just as good, but the pizza menu is all I look at when I’m there. My favorite is the “Isabella” with roasted sweet potatoes, roasted parsnips, caramelized onions, roasted garlic, fresh mozzarella and shaved fennel, drizzled with reduced balsamic vinegar and parmesan. It’s simply a slice of heaven.

If a client tells me their customers love the food photos on their website and had to come in no matter the weather outside on a dark night, then I know I’ve done my job. And I love my job.

BBL-01 BBL-02 BBL-03 BBL-04 BBL-05 BBL-06 BBL-07 BBL-08 BBL-09 BBL-10 BBL-11 BBL-12 BBL-13 BBL-14 BBL-15 BBL-16 BBL-17 BBL-18 BBL-19 BBL-20

Salade Lyonnaise: Red-Wine Poached Egg & Salad

What do you do with that half bottle of red wine that has been on the kitchen counter for over a week? Poach an egg of course.
Check out the recipe here.

Poached Egg

Menu Shoot for Double Tree by Hilton

I wanted to share some of the shots from a menu shoot I did for Double Tree by Hilton—Valley Forge in King of Prussia, PA. Executive Chef Stephen Delaney plated some really delicious comfort food from lounge menu. People ask me all the time if I doctor food for shots, and I really don’t (save for an occasional brush of olive oil here and there for some extra shine). I rely on the plating techniques from the chefs as they are the true artists and my job is to make it look as delectable as possible. If you want to eat it, we have succeeded. Nothing makes me happier to hear from restaurant clients that they have customers come in on a cold dark night because they saw the food shots on their website.

Chef Delaney

Executive Chef Stephen Delaney putting the finishing touch on the foam.

Calamari

Fried Calamari with a spicy dipping sauce.

BLT

Grilled cheese with bacon, tomato, and avocado.

FB Pizza

Flatbread pizza with brie, caramelized onions with balsamic reduction,
portabella mushrooms, and arugula.

Salmon

Grilled salmon.

Triple Choc Mousse

Layered triple chocolate mousse.

Cinnamon Swirl Bread Recipe

Winter is a great time to stay home and bake. My wife Colleen is the quick bread queen and makes a really yummy cinnamon swirl bread that fills the house with wonderful smells of warm cinnamon. We’ve been wanting to shoot more recipes that we have tried, and have incorporated into our regular menu. And if you are on a budget, most of the ingredients are already in your pantry and fridge. You can make your own loaves at home that everyone in the family will enjoy for breakfast or an after-school snack.

Cinnamon Swirl Bread

Ingredients:

1/3 cup sugar (for swirling)

2 tsp cinnamon

2 cups flour

1 tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup sugar (for batter)

1 egg

1 cup milk

1/3 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350-F

0-Ingredients

Ingredients

1-Prep Loafpan

Step 1- Prepare a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan by lightly greasing and powdering with flour.

2-Mix Sugar-Cinn

Step 2- Mix 1/3 cup sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon. (set aside)

3-Dry Mixture

Step 3- Prepare dry mixture in a large bowl.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and 1 cup of sugar.

4-Wet Mixture

Step 4- Prepare wet mixture in a small bowl, whisk together the egg, milk and oil.

5-Mix Batter

Step 5- Add to the dry ingredients and mix with a spoon until just combined.

6-Pour Half Batter

Step 6- Pour 1/2 the batter into the loaf pan.

7-Layer Cinn-Sugar

Step 7- Sprinkle 1/2 cinnamon-sugar mixture to coat the surface of the batter evenly.

8-Pour Remaining Batter

Step 8- Pour the remaining batter in the pan.
Use a spatula or knife to smooth into corners and edges.

9-Top with Sugar-Cinn

Step 9- Top evenly with remaining cinnamon-sugar mixture.

10-Vert Swirls

Step 10- Make vertical swirls with a knife.

11-Horiz Swirls

Step 11- Make a couple horizontal swirls the length of the pan.

12-Bake for 45-50

Ready to go into the oven! Bake for 45-50 minutes at 350-F.
Check with a toothpick (should remove clean).

13-Let Cool

Let sit for about 10 min in the pan then remove to a wire rack until cool.

14-Enjoy

Enjoy!

Crostini with Pecorino, Pear, Hazelnuts, and Rosemary

With holiday office parties and family get-togethers upon us, I wanted to share a recipe by my eminently talented foodie friend, Emily Gold, with whom I collaborated to shoot some recipes for Culture Magazine last year. (See the related blog post here). And I would be remiss if I didn’t give props to another foodie friend and Editor Elaine Khosrova for styling and art-direction. I really enjoy collaborative efforts in the studio and plan on doing a lot more in the coming months.) Enjoy!

Crostini

 

This freeform recipe casually pairs savory, sweet, herbaceous, and nutty elements. It’s important to use a really exceptional pear jam or butter that is not too sweet. Simple to assemble, it makes for an extremely toothsome and wine-friendly snack. The recipe is inspired by an autumn specialty from Eric Warnstedt at Hen of the Wood, in Waterbury, Vermont, that combines Bonnieview Farm Coomersdale cheese with honey-roasted pears, grilled bread, and hazelnuts. 

Serves 4 to 8

1 baguette or sourdough loaf

Olive oil

¼ cup hazelnuts

1 stalk fresh rosemary

Pear jam, pear butter, or apple butter

Young pecorino or medium-aged sheep’s milk cheese

Heat oven to 350ºF. Cut bread into ½-inch-thick slices. Brush both sides with a little bit of olive oil. Place on a sheet pan, and bake for 10 minutes, then flip and bake another 10 minutes. At the same time put the hazelnuts on a separate sheet pan and bake with the crostini for the second 10-minute stretch.

When the crostini come out of the oven lightly brown and crisp, rub one side of each slice with the rosemary. Little pieces of the leaves will break off onto the crostini, which is what you want.

Let the hazelnuts cool, then rub off skins. Chop coarsely and set aside.

Spread a thin layer of pear jam on each crostini, and top with slivers of pecorino (use a vegetable peeler for thin, uniform pieces). Return to oven for 3 to 5 minutes, until cheese gently droops over jam. Remove from oven and top with hazelnuts.

Pairing suggestion: Pinot noir or Trousseau, such as the Arbois Rouge 2010 Trousseau Les Bérangères

(Note: for more info on Emily, check out her Website: www.papercakescissors.com)